Is the home theater craze over or what?

Discussion in 'General Audio Discussion' started by Farmhand, Dec 16, 2016.

  1. Farmhand

    Farmhand Super Member

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    I never got into it myself, but I've noticed a flood of 5.1 receivers and surround kits on CL and in the thrifts.
    I'm wondering what's up, and what the new craze is. Is everyone switching to sound bars?
     
  2. whoaru99

    whoaru99 Epic Member

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    I'm sure there are some converts to soundbar, but I'd expect mainly it's getting rid of older stuff lacking the newest features.
     
  3. DougMac

    DougMac Super Member

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    Sound bars may be part of it. I think the other part may be folks upgrading. We've gone from 5.1 to 7.1 and now to 9.1 or even 11.1.

    Another factor is the way folks consume media now. With streaming, lots of folks just watch on their mobile devices. This actually may be good for traditional theaters, with folks returning to see sensory immersive movies.

    I'm one of the lucky few with a dedicated home theater. It's amazing to watch movies on a 10 foot screen with speakers properly spaced and EQ'd. Perhaps trying to do home theater in a living room or den fell short of expectations.
     
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  4. FauxHall

    FauxHall Super Member

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    Frankly, the quality of movies has declined. I seldom find any worth the time.
     
  5. Condorsat

    Condorsat Audio Enthusiast

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    In recent years ... same as it ever was.

    [​IMG]

    Vipercated market ... one end soundbars, BestBuys ... the other custom built homes with home theaters in the basement.

    :( Good point ... I've been Mad Max-ing it for years now ... watch old movies mostly. Not a good reason to invest in a home theater. If I ever get around to finishing my basement ... I'm thinking more in terms of a dedicated listening space.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
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  6. hjames

    hjames Nabbed ... Subscriber

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    There is so much more to Home theater than new movies ...

    There is still a lot of good older movies available - I need to screen Spartacus over the holidays - (I got the restored bluRay version a couple months back) .. and I played the Melody Gardot Live in Concert (Paris) bluray last weekend when some audio friends were over ... its a real nice concert recording. As was Rolling Stones with Muddy Waters at the Chess Club - they enjoyed that one too! No sound bar here, I have UREI 809A studio monitors for Front mains and Side surrounds - and a JBL 4641 18" theater subwoofer in the right front corner (powered by a Harman Kardon Citation 22 amp bridged-mono for 600+ watts).

    Plus I am looking forward to season 2 of The Man in the High Castle on Amazon (streaming) - the new 10 episodes were released today.

    My gear is mostly vintage amps, speakers and such - but I did buy a refurbed OPPO Bluray player last month ...
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
  7. Putterman

    Putterman Super Member

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    Between the copy protection paranoia of Hollywood (e.g. HDMI replacing perfectly good digital connections) and manufacturers continually adding new features to created obsolescence (7.1, wi fi, internet connectivity, new software, ATMOS, etc.) it seems like the market is getting burned out......unless you have the money to hire someone to design and install a home theater room or do it yourself and then keep replacing as each new technology comes out.

    A bit of a rant:rant: I'll admit. Having said that home theater isn't dead, but it certainly could use some consolidation and simplification which to some degree is what soundbars are all about.
     
  8. WaynerN

    WaynerN Super Member

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    I think Hollywood is over. Movies are horrible, not many are going to them. Most of the movies are computer generated, not much acting going on. And Hollywood always seems to work in their political messages. And yes, multi-channel as we know it is being handed its hat. DVD/BlueRay sales are down. Gaming rules.

    Surround receivers are going to be a dinosaur, replaced by the sound bar, if anything, or people will buy nothing.

    In fact, TV is on its way out. The Nielson ratings for the very top shows are poor. Kids are watching their phones, social media, Netflix, etc.
     
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  9. interalian

    interalian Super Member

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    I do HT installs and configs - business is good. Lots of people are scared to get their hands into the menus on TVs and AVRs, and most of the time when I get there it's all messed up. I'd say for every properly set up system there are hundreds of improperly set up systems - this surely results in dissatisfaction.

    That said, my home system has a 7.1 AVR and I only use it as 3.1 (center, main, sub) due to WAF (she won't have more speakers in the TV room). Guess what? 3.1 sounds just fine. But my speakers and sub are ancient a/d/s/ sub sat, head and shoulders over most of what passes for speakers today. SAT700 for center and main, MS-2 for LFE.
     
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  10. 1tumbleweed

    1tumbleweed Kozmik Kowboy Subscriber

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    ^^^ This.

    When I was selling retail audio, it was funny how people wanted to dump their perfectly good AVRs for one with new features. Some of it was necessary, particularly when HDMI took over. We sold new and used, and my boss insisted on buying used AVRs of older generations, that were virtually impossible to resell at a profit. I'm convinced it's one of the things that brought down the store after a 20-year run.

    Cheers,
    Larry B.
     
  11. whoaru99

    whoaru99 Epic Member

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    There has been little true obsolesence.

    Indeed, many new features, bells, and whistles added, but that doesn't stop anyone from playing the basic Dolby Digital format that has been the core codec of surround sound for about 20 years, even on the newest movies.
     
  12. blue72

    blue72 Member

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    Location:
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    My local area has a huge tidal wave of new and used TVs on Craigslist right now, and nearly 0 home theatre electronics online or in the thrift stores. It ebbs and flows all the time.
    I'm the one buying up all the good home theatre stuff around me whenever I can, benefitting from others getting rid of perfectly good (and usually much more powerful) older stuff so that they can have a soundbar and little wireless subwoofer, or the latest and greatest with HDMI, streaming, and Bluetooth. I've had no problem selling off older HTRs and speaker packages. I'm also benefitting from Blu-ray movies finally finding their way into thrift stores at cheap prices.

    In the last year, I've pieced together three matching full size towers for my front LCR, and I'm currently working on room response measurement and treatment. Next after that will be a pair of matched DIY transmission line subwoofers. Just because some are downsizing doesn't mean that others aren't upsizing at the same time.

    As far as there not being decent movies nowadays, that has always been the case. The past is a rose colored glasses affair where we focus on the memorable, and the mundane is forgotten. It just means you have to search a little harder to find the good stuff, because good stuff is still being made and will continue to be released.
     
  13. matteos

    matteos Stereotype Subscriber

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    Nope. There's a new standard every few years. 8 years ago it was HDMI and the new Dolby TrueHD DTS equivalent, now it is Dolby Atmos. People upgrade when the new stuff comes out. AVR's hold their values probably even less than cars.

    Also I don't think home theater is dying, I don't think it was huge in the first place. Nothing like watching movies or even TV episodes on a projector with 5.1. I was watching the Grand Tour last night on my 1080p LED projector. Looked amazing. The screen fold out of sight in seconds when not watching. It would be nice to have a dedicated room, but spending some time setting one up correctly in your living room can be very satisfying.

    There's a new version of the LG LED projector I have that is on the market now that is short throw. Which means you can set it up on your TV stand inches away from a pull down screen and get a good picture. These LED projectors have a bulb life span of about 20,000 hours are plenty bright with the blinds closed and are around $1k. Less than many TV's, honestly I don't know why more people don't have them. For all the talk of 4K and OLED and HDR... In the end, nothing beats size. Bigger is always better.

    These projectors are so cheap for what they offer, so worth getting one.

    https://www.walmart.com/ip/LG-Porta...75035&wl11=online&wl12=45675374&wl13=&veh=sem
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
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  14. superdog

    superdog AK Member

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    I think for the most part is was a craze.The theatre experience is nice but I think people realize they don't need to feel that everytime they watch tv.As such the avrs and the multi speakers are being lost through attrition in Americas living rooms.
     
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  15. sKiZo

    sKiZo Hates received: 8641 Subscriber

    First I've seen the word "vipercated" used on the forum. You'd think to see that much more often here. <G>

    As far as any "glut" goes, I'd think that's mostly because the installed base is just so much greater than it was just a few years back. The real percentage vice units sold might actually be less. Be interesting to see how many of the systems offered have the newer features like streaming support, blue ray, HDMI, etc.

    Maybe time to add my trusty old Onkyo 7.1 to the pile ... that tops out at S Video and optical sound. Still does what I want it to do though, so no rush.
     
  16. Erik Tracy

    Erik Tracy Super Member

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    As both my wife and I being retired, we've played lookie-loo at A LOT of model homes for fun.

    Most every model home was horribly laid out for potential audio systems. Precious few would even accommodate hometheater installs for 5.1 let alone 7.1 or up - even using inwalls or ceiling (blech, the thought gives me shudders).

    I have 5.1 in my house and it's a compromise of positioning. Even if I got the WAF, 7.1 would be impossible. ATMOS? Forget it, can't do it.

    That said, I'll admit to losing interest in watching bombastic surround movies. The novelty has worn off. And I can't even remember when I actually put a bluray movie into my player.

    I'll watch movie broadcasts and do get some satisfaction in having 5.1. It's nice to have but no longer a 'must have'.
     
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  17. Condorsat

    Condorsat Audio Enthusiast

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    Probably not a real word ... a former boss of mine use to use that all the time ... he described it as bifurcated with a little more violent umph in different directions. He reminded me of the character Abraham Ford in the walking dead .. he had a unique use of language.
     
  18. gtv2000

    gtv2000 AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Yep. Check out what you can get top of the line older AV receivers for on eBay.
     
  19. N8Nagel

    N8Nagel AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Undoubtedly. All of the AVRs I see on my local Craigs are either really old ones with no HDMI, so people are finally getting with the program, or else they're recent high end ones and I'm guessing those people are upgrading to 4K, Atmos, etc.
     
  20. WaynerN

    WaynerN Super Member

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    Try "The Current" 89.3 FM (Minneapolis). Unfortunately, its a public radio station, so you will have to filter out the crap, but there are some good new bands that I have found (some are old, just never heard of them), like Modest Mouse, Flaming Lips, Fleetfoxes and the likes of that. You can get it thru your computer. http://www.thecurrent.org/listen

    If you want to listen to music from any part of the world, check this little site out: http://radio.garden/live/pierre/kslt/

    Wayner

    (sorry to sideswipe thread a bit).....
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
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